Orthopaedics (also called orthopaedic surgery) is the medical specialty that focuses on injuries and diseases of your body’s musculoskeletal system. This complex system, which includes your bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and nerves, allows you to move, work, and be active.
Once devoted to the care of children with spine and limb deformities, orthopaedists now care for patients of all ages, from newborns with clubfeet to young athletes requiring arthroscopic surgery to older people with arthritis. And anybody can break a bone at any age.
What do orthopedists treat?
Orthopedists treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal conditions. These conditions may be present from birth, or they may result from an injury or age-related wear and tear.
Below are some of the most common conditions that an orthopedist may treat:
- joint pain from arthritis
- bone fractures
- soft tissue injuries, which are those that affect muscles, tendons, and ligaments
- back pain
- neck pain
- shoulder pain and problems, such as bursitis
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- overuse and sports injuries, including sprains, tendinitis, meniscus tears, and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears
- congenital conditions, such as clubfoot and scoliosis
- bone cancer